Science Themes

ST-1: HUMAN BENEFITS AND IMPACTS

Among the most important threats facing marine ecosystems today is the combined impact of multiple stressors. Stressors in marine and estuarine ecosystems have a large number of forms and sources. Most stressors represent the extremes of normal environmental variation that have increased in frequency or severity as a consequence of human activities. Given their ubiquity, several stressors often simultaneously affect organisms, populations and communities. Marine ecosystem stressors that are of particular concern in the Indian Ocean include warming, sea-level rise, deoxygenation, acidification, eutrophication, atmospheric and plastic pollution, coastal erosion and overfishing. These stressors, combined with other physical consequences of human activities, are affecting marine biological processes from genes to ecosystems, over scales from rock pools to ocean basins, impacting ecosystem services and threatening human food security.

Two of the core questions in the above context of relevance to the Indian Ocean region that call for the attention of the IIOE-2 scientific community are:

  1. How are human-induced ocean stressors (for example, warming, sea-level rise, saltwater intrusion, deoxygenation, acidification, eutrophication, atmospheric and plastic pollution, coastal erosion and overfishing) impacting the biogeochemistry and ecology of the Indian Ocean?
  2. How, in turn, are these impacts affecting human populations?

For an effective coordination of delivery of the various facets of ST-1 IIOE-2, a Committee chaired by Dr. Ben Milligan (b.milligan@ucl.ac.uk), currently Senior Research Associate at the Centre for Law and Environment, and Institute for Sustainable Resources, University College London has been constituted. The composition of the Committee is:

Search Term

Name Nationality Affiliation
Dr. Ben Milligan
CHAIR
UK Centre for Law and Environment, and Institute for Sustainable Resources, University College London, UK.
Email: b.milligan@ucl.ac.uk
Dr. R. Kirubagaran India National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), Chennai, India.
Email: kiruba@niot.res.in
Dr. Intan Suci Nurhati Indonesia Indonesia Research Center for Oceanography, Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), Jakarta.
Email: inta007@lipi.go.id
Ms. Lousie Heaps UK WWF-UK, Living Planet Centre, Woking, Surrey, UK, GU 214LL.
Email: lheaps@wwf.org.uk